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America 37, Us 24, Ohio 11, Ali 10, Cleveland 10, Pakistan 9, Mr. Boehner 8, Cnn 7, U.s. 7, Ikea 6, United States 5, Chicago 5, Feisal 5, Cincinnati 5, Washington 4, Emily 4, Rahm Emanuel 4, Angelina Jolie 3, Nancy Pelosi 3, Clinton 3,
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  CNN    CNN Newsroom    News/Business. New.  

    September 8, 2010
    1:00 - 3:00pm EDT  

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themselves. let's get together and turn this into a strength. >> reporter: jill dougherty, cnn, kabul. unique reporting here on cnn. the cnn "newsroom" continues right now with ali velshi. >> drew, thanks very much. here's what i've got on the rundown. dr. sanjay gupta has an exclusive conversation with angelina jolie, on a u.n. mission to flood-ravaged pakistan. she is witnessing stories of horror, along with stories of true inspiration, and she is going to share them with sanjay. we'll share them with you. plus, bp is out with its explanation of the gulf oil disaster. if you're looking for a flat-out apology or admission of responsibility, you're not going to get it. there is plenty of blame to go around. we'll tell you where the fingers are pointed. and it's clean and efficient and could cut your energy in half, geothermal energy. a company is taking it into the big leagues here in the united states. but first, a big development in the islamic center controversy in new york. the imam behind the controversy,
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imam faceal abdul rauf will talk with soledad o'brien at 9:00 p.m. eastern tonight. let me give you some background again as to what the story is about. it is an islamic center that is being built on a commercial site, two blocks from ground zero. you can sort of see it here, the world trade center is this area at the bottom. the proposed mosque site is a couple of blocks north of that. and by the would i, an existing mosque is two blocks north of that. that is the mosque that will be relocating to this area. but it's -- as part of a larger islamic center with prayer areas, as we have just learned today from an op-ed in the "new york times" will actually involve prayer spaces for christianities, for christians, and for jews, as well. let's talk a little bit about what this imam has said in his op-ed. he says, and i quote, cordoba
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house will be built on fundamentals common to judaism. to love the lord our creator with all of our hearts, minds, souls and strength and to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. we want to foster a culture of worship authentic it each religious tradition and a culture of foraging personal bonds across religious tradition. so this is what imam raul who has just returned from weeks overseas has had to say about this. he did say, by the way, that he did not want to comment on this growing controversy while he was overseas. he wanted to be in the united states to do it. now, the name that he is use, cordoba house he explains in his "new york times" op-ed, it was inspired by the city in spain where muslims, christians and jews coexisted in the middle ages during a period of great cultural enrichment created by muslims. and, of course, there is nothing in this entire discussion that is free of controversy, even that statement is challenged by some people to say things
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weren't as good in cordoba, spain in the 1500s and 1400s, as this imam would have you believe. but you're going to hear it from him, himself, tonight on "larry king live." soledad o'brien will be interviewing him for the first time on television tonight. deborah feyerick, as well, has been following this story with great detail. if we want to know more about who this man is, how and why he got to the center of this controversy, you can hear it best from deborah. listen to this. >> reporter: you have never heard him speak. this is what imam abdul rauf has to say. >> the major theme in islam is the oneness of god. and that we should worship one god, love and adore the one god. >> reporter: people who know imam feisal say he is a voice of moderation. the state department. >> he has worked on tolerance and well-known.
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>> reporter: near ground zero. >> he is somebody who has sacrificed his life to building bridges within communities. >> reporter: islamic scholar and university professor john espisito. how would you describe him? is he a threat? >> feisal is, from my point of view, he is mr. mellow. >> reporter: imam feisal is a muslim, at the other end of the islamic spectrum from the radical ideology that feeds groups like al qaeda. >> he approaches things spiritually, he is from a background where one speaker receives a more kind of spiritual, mystical path. he is somebody who would find terrorism and religious extremism as abhorrent. he has run a mosque in this area for years and years and years. >> reporter: that mosque is ten blocks from ground zero, and has coexisted peacefully in the tribecka neighborhood for 28 years. >> he has integrated himself
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into the community. >> reporter: according to his biography, feisal abdul rauf was born in kuwait in 1948, into an egyptian family steeped in scholarship. in 1997, he founded the nonprofit american society for muslim advancement. its mission described on its website as strengthening an authentic expression of islam based on cultural and religious harmony through interfaith collaboration, youth and women's empowerment. several years later, rauf founded the institute to improve relations between the muslim world and the west, writing how american muslims can help bridge the divide. the state department noticed, sending him as a cultural ambassador on four trips to the middle east. most recently this summer. >> they try to get people who reflect the best aspects of american societies. >> reporter: rauf is often asked to speak at meetings like the world economic forum. he was criticized after 9/11 for
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saying u.s. support of oppressive regimes was partly responsible for the attacks, but maintained his remarks on "60 minutes" had been taken out of context. rauf supports israel's rights to exist, but can't condemn hamas as terrorists. as for the proposed islamic center and mosque near ground zero, he says that too is about bridges. >> this is also our expression of the 99.99% of muslims around the world, including in america, who have condemned and continued to condemn terrorism. this is about our stand as in this community. >> deborah feyerick joins me now from new york. you have been fully involved in the story, and obviously, as we saw in your story, you have spoken to imam rauf in the past. does your impression of him square with the impression that -- of those people you talked to, that this is a man who does not seem to be
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harboring some inner sympathy for terrorism or extremism or fundamentalism? >> you know, it's interesting. i have actually not met him personally, but i have spoken to a number of people who know him, met with him, have spoken with him, and they really say the one thing is that he is a moderate. he is mainstream, he practices a very peaceful, loving islam. i've been reading through his book, and it's really fascinating. one of the things he does is, he just shows how many similarities there are between the jewish christian prove gets, how they're mentioned in the koran. trying to slow slaimilarities, d what makes us similar as opposed to different. he is a bridge builder. and the state department just doesn't send anybody out to serve as a voice and as a representative for the government. and they thought that he was the best choice. >> all right. i don't think he knew that he was going to step into it so
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much with this whole issue. but he seems prepared to discuss it, and he's going to talk about it tonight here on cnn. deb ferryerick thank you so muc. these religious are thought of as major western religious traditions that have a lot more in common than not. but there are five basic principles of islam. and i just want to tell you about those right now. these are the five basic principles that all muslims should subscribe to. the first one is the oath. that is the arabic script, which is basically the oath that muslims must take to say that there is only one god, and mohammed is god's prove felt. that is the belief. in islam, the prophet mohammed is not a divine being, he is a man through whom god sent his message to the people. number two is prayer. you will have heard that muslims are compelled to pray five times
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a day. certain sects in islam interpret that differently. but the bottom line is regular daily prayer at set times is a major tenet of islam. the third one is giving of ahms, a certain amount of your income is to be given back to the community, and distributed as charity. some people interpret that, by the way, to mean direct giving to charity, and not going through the religious institutions. the idea of fasting. right now we are in the month of ramadan, where muslims fast from sun-up until sundown for the entire month. the end of ramadan, the breaking of that fast, finally, will take place on saturday, september the 11th. and finally, this one is most common to some people, pause of the images you see on tv. the hodge. the pilgrimage to mecca, which is something that is called upon for all healthy muslims to do at one point during their life. i want to discuss a little bit
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more about why this is not the image you have or many people have of islam, but in fact they have a very different image of islam. and to do that, i want to bring in michael kromarty, the vice president of ethics and public policy center. he is a senior adviser to the pugh forum on religious life and professor of religion. michael, thank you for being with us. tell me this. why is islam, certainly in america, not regarded by the mainstream as a religion that is a cousin to christianity or judaism and has so much more in common with them than not? >> well, i think the reason for that is simply that modern islam in america has a pr problem. clearly, from, you know, your own show, you can see here that americans have many diverse views of what islam is. the reason for that is simply this. islam is a very diverse place. i mean, it is about as diverse
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as protestant christianity. because islam does the not like catholicism, have a pope, it's never really clear who is speaking for islam. and so as a result, you have many, many, many different interpretations of how to understand the koran, and what real islam is. so as a result, you -- out of the diversity of islam, you have all these different conflicting views of what islam is. right now, the problem for modern islam is that you've got a small, very small percentage of muslims who have become violent, and have used violence to advance their cause. and they get all the publicity. meanwhile, mile the moderates, who are the largest percentage of muslims everywhere, don't get the attention they should. and so people have this view that islam is a violent religion. and that's a misperception. >> you know, the holy books of the major religious traditions in the west have a whole lot of
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violence in them. there were incidents of violence, historical violence. and yet many of our own viewers have the impression that islam somehow is violent as part of its nature. >> well, that's right. and, i mean, look, let's be frank. it was people who called themselves muslims who crashed airplanes into buildings. and so while the bible and the old testament has violent scenes, there are not many people around the world who are flying airplanes into buildings, and doing it in the aim of the god of abraham, jacob, isaac and jesus. and so that's where the problem is. people are doing this in the name of a faith, and they're misrepresenting faith itself. >> how then do you deal with the fact that this imam rauf -- i think legitimatebly believes he was being a bridge builder, doing the right thing, but he cannot get out from under the impression that so many people have about islam, so something
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that seems like a step in the right direction, the motives of that are suspect. so if islam, as you said, in america has a pr problem and possibly around the world, how do people who want to change that -- that message get it done? >> well, ironically, i think this whole debate is actually helping us in that area. it's really -- with your program and other programs, causing us to rethink our perceptions of each other. and so people of different faiths are having to revisit what the core essence of judaism or islamism is. and that's all to the good. and while this controversy is very intense and emotional, it does cause us to do what we're doing now, which is to try to get at the core of what each of these faiths are about. and i think that's helped. and i think the i am imam would do well if he did his appearances explaining who he is as opposed to what the misperceptions are. >> michael, i suspect now he is
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back in the united states. you're going to see a lot more of that. thanks very much for sarg sharing your insights with us. >> thank you. >> michael cromartie is the vice president at the policy center. the imam is going to give his first u.s. tv interview tonight on "larry king live" hosted by soledad o'brien, 9:00 p.m. eastern. we also want to announce that piers morgan will be taking over larry king's prime time hour. you might know him as a judge on nbc's "america's got talent." he most recently hosted life stories in the united kingdom. he has an extensive newspaper background and is coming to us with a candid in-depth interview show. pleased to welcome him to the cnn team. big finger pointing going on, this time from b pf. it's out on its report from the gulf oil disaster. if you're looking for major acknowledgment of blame, you are not going to get it. we have gone over it with a fine-toothed comb, and we'll bring it to you on the other side.
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all right. it is full speed ahead in the gulf oil disaster blame game. bp posted its internal report on the massive oil spill on its website this morning. the bottom line, quote, a sequence of failures involving a number of different parties, end quote, was to blame. bp does take some responsibility, but for the most part, it points its fingers at others. you'll recall, the worst oil spill in u.s. history started on april the 20th with the explosion and fire on the deepwater horizon oil rig. 11 workers were killed. nearly 5 million barrels of oil flowed into the gulf of mexico. and it wasn't until july 15th that the well was finally
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capped. our ed lavandera has been poring over bp's 190-page report and joins us from dallas. ed, anybody going to be happy with this report? well, i haven't heard much positive reaction to it so far. there's been a number of environmental groups, legal groups, we've still got a wide net cast out to get response and reaction as to what has been -- we imagine it's a lengthy report, and incredibly involved and detailed. so imagine a lot of people are still poring through it, trying to understand exactly what bp has included in this. but you know, you really kind of hit on the major points that essentially what they're saying is that the -- several companies should shoulder the blame for this disaster, including transocean, which owned the deepwater horizon rig, as well as halliburton, the company responsible for cementing the well. and in those findings, the company also released a 30-minute video, having included
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on an medication describing what they say they believe happened leading up to this disaster. listen to a little bit of it to get a sense of what bp is putting out there today. >> we believe that bp and halliburton, working together, should have better identified and address the issues underlying the cement job. improve technical aassurance, risk management and personnel could have raised awareness and led to better decisions regarding acceptance and implementation of the cement proposal. >> you heard there a little bit of the way bp kind of criticized itself. some people saying essentially it's a slap on the wrist. so there are other investigations going on, which will pore much deeper and drill much deeper into the technicals of what went into the days leading up to this oil rig disaster. but ali, it's clear that many people are believing that the way bp has presented this has much more to do with public
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relations and kind of setting up their own legal defense here in the months and years ahead. >> ed, you've done a lot of coverage on this, and it's not over yet. we'll continue to cover this. ed lavandera, thanks. coming up next, president obama announcing plans to help small businesses. we're going to tell you what he plans to do when i come back. th♪ ♪ check the wife check the kids check your email messages ♪ ♪ check the money in the bank check the gas in the tank ♪ ♪ check the hottie walking by... ♪ ♪ ...wait that's a dude, no thanks ♪ ♪ check the new hairdo check the mic one two ♪ ♪ 'cause i'm about to drop some knowledge right on top of you ♪ ♪ you check a lot of things already why not add one more ♪ ♪ that can help your situation for sure ♪ ♪ check your credit score ♪ free-credit-score-dot-com free-credit-score ♪ ♪ you won't regret it at all vo: offer applies with enrollment in triple advantage.
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hi, we all know times are tough and a lot of businesses are not doing so well, except that businesses, particularly small businesses in america, are the heart of job growth, whether times are good or times are bad. right now, that growth isn't happening. next hour, the president announces big plans to help businesses, particularly small businesses, to the tune of
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billions. actually, hundreds of billions of dollars. let me break it down for you. so far, the president this week has already announced $150 billion worth of -- you can call it stimulus or tax cuts, tax credits. $150 bother worth of stuff going into the country. another $2 billion about to be announced. these are tax cuts for businesses. let me break down how the tax cuts work for you. first of all, there will be the tax cut -- the tax credit can be taken if you invest in physical plant, if you build buildings or you buy equipment. and if you do that, you get 100% tax credit. 100%. so this is meant to stimulate businesses to actually invest in things. now, how many businesses does this affect? according to the government, the white house, 1.5 million businesses will be able to take advantage of this particular tax cut. now, we are expecting more details, obviously, when the president speaks. here's what we don't know just yet. we don't know if this gets past
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congress. we have not too many weeks left in congress. congress is very edgy about passing things that have to do with money right now. so it may not get past at all. how many people it affects? we know it affects 1.5 million businesses, but what does that mean in terms of the number of people expected to get jobs as a result of this? we don't know the economic impact of it, we don't know the budget impact, while the president has come up with $350 billion worth of stuff this week, they -- the white house has said it will be offset by some other things. so we don't know what the budget impact of this is. we also don't know what the political impact of it is. we'll talk to our political correspondents later in the show about that. if you want more information on your money, tune into "your money" saturdays at 1:00 p.m. eastern, sundays at 3:00 p.m. eastern. all right, a new type of lifeguard is watching your back at the beach. emily may not be buff enough for "bay watch," but she is every bit as effective. we'll introduce you when we come
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aspercreme breaks the grip, with maximum-strength medicine and no embarrassing odor. break the grip of pain with aspercreme. next time you were at a beach, a new lifeguard could be on duty. now, she does not run in slow motion, on the sand, wearing a red bikini, but she can definitely keep you safe. gary tuckman takes us to the edge of discovery. >> reporter: this lifeguard might be the best on the beach. her name? emily. which stands for emergency integrated life saving lanyard. >> it doesn't replace the lifeguard, but may enable the lifeguards to get to an individual they wouldn't have been able to get to in the past. >> reporter: emily speeds
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through high waves in seconds, directed by a remote control. when she reaches swimmers in distress, they can hold on until more help arrives. the creators also allow it to talk to swimmers through an on-board p.a. system. >> we have worked on a radio to send out to say stay away from her while going into a rip tide. >> reporter: and that's not all this bay watching bob might do. she may be used for military surveillance. emily is still being tested, so it could be a while before you can check her out at a beach near you. gary tuckman, cnn. that is excellent. i'm enjoying emily. all right, she is one of hollywood's biggest stars, angelina jolie is also a personal envoy of the united nations high commission for refugees. now touring need flood-ravaged pakistan and appealing to the rest of the world for help.
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all right. i want to go back to the cnn express, which is in covington, kentucky. gloria borger is there, our senior political analyst, with the buckeye state right behind you, where you were earlier today. gloria, you were talking to a
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first-time -- a first-term democrat, who is now being challenged by the man he defeated last time around. tell us a bit about this. >> yeah, it's a little bit of a grudge match here, and steve dro drehouse came in the obama wave in 2008 and the man he beat is trying to get back his seat in the anti obama wave. and so it was interesting, because i talked to congressman drehouse, asked him about the tax cut question, which is, of course, topic a today, with the president's speech coming up. he's with the president on everything, on stimulus, on health care. but when you ask him specifically whether he supports a repeal of the tax cuts for wealthy, he is kind of hard to pin down. take a listen to this, ali. would you keep the tax cuts for the middle class and have the tax cuts for the wealthy? >> i'm going to support the middle class. i'm going support small
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business. >> how would you vote? >> tell me what the bill is. this hypothetical, if the bush tax cuts -- as one big package, that's not the way this is going to work. >> but the president is going to come out and say today that he wants the tax cuts for the wealthy to expire. >> if it is -- >> and he wants to keep the tax cuts for the middle class. >> if it is on earned income for people above a certain level, i will certain consider it. but if it's going to penalize -- >> you're not giving me an answer on this. >> no, i'm telling you what it is, and i'm not going to engage in a hypothetical. >> so there you have it, ali. he calls it a hypothetical. and there are lots of democrats in swing districts who they're going to have to give a bye on this, if it comes to a vote, because the tax issue is very, very delicate for democrats. >> well, it's particularly tough at this point to be a democrat on this one. hopefully it will become clearer later today after the president speaks. we'll talk about that in a minute. but it is a little easier to be a republican on this particular issue. they seem to have a more consistent take on it.
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what is drehouse's opponent, the man who used to be in the district, got to say about this? >> right. steve shavot has a very clear answer on this, which is no, no, no, no. no tax increases. take a listen. he's going to talk about keeping the tax cuts for the middle class, but getting rid of the tax cuts for the wealthy. what do you think about that? >> they're using the typical liberal class warfare. that's what this is all about. they're trying to pit groups of people against each other. and that's just the wrong way to do it. what we ought to do is reduce the level of taxation on all americans. and also those that are creating jobs. >> can we afford that? can we afford that, though, given the deficit the country faces? >> we can't afford not to do it. >> so this, of course, ali, leads into the deficit argument, right? and the deficit argument -- the democrats are going to say, well, excuse me, how can you be for extending tax cuts, which
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will cost $3 trillion if you want to reduce the deficit? that doesn't make any sense. that's really the key argument we're going to have going into this entire fall -- >> i thought that was a great answer. can we afford to do this, and he said we can't afford not to do it. in other words, another nonanswer to, wait a second -- look, we are ultimately all going to learn that we can't have it both ways. what do we expect the president is going to contribute to this discussion this afternoon when he speaks? >> well, he's going to talk about more stimulus, although they're not going to call it a stimulus package. he's going to talk about helping small business, which is something that you would assume the democrats and republicans might be able to agree on. and he's going to really talk about the fact that he wants to extend the tax cuts for those earning less than $250,000 a year, those families. but for the top 2% of wage earners, he's going to say, you know what, it's time to bring
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the tax rates down, let those expire. raise those tax righates, i'm sorry, let those expire back to where they were, when bill clinton was president. because we have to start attacking this deficit problem. and he's going to say that it is, in fact, the responsible thing to do. but it is going to be one of the central arguments of this campaign. and you're going to -- it's very dangerous, i might add, for ali, because i mean -- for democrats, ali, because they're playing in the republican wheelhouse here. tax cuts is a republican issue. so it's hard for democrats to talk about raising taxes. >> yep. >> sometimes people don't distinguish between the rich and the middle class. >> and we're looking on the right side of the screen, by the way, at the president in cleveland, ohio. he is there talking to some people. you know, we're going to bring you that speech when he makes it a little later on. and gloria, we'll keep talking about this.
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i have to say, while you're still in the shadow of cincinnati, you know, like new york has its bagels and philly has its cheesesteaks, cincinnati chile has got to be one of my favorite foods. >> you know, we passed a cincinnati chili place, and we stopped, because a little bit of the diet. maybe we'll get back there later tonight. >> yeah, i like the idea of two of my favorite foods being put together, chili and spaghetti and tomatoes. gloria, good to see you. we will talk later on in the show. gloria borger, our senior political analyst, coming to kentucky, right across the river from cincinnati much angelina jolie, touring the flood-ravageded pakistan. her exclusive interview with sanjay gupta, next.
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all right. it's time now to go globe trekking. we are going back to flood-ravageded pakistan. actress angelina jolie is on a mission, urging the entire national community to do more to help the millions of flood victims. she is there from the united nations high commission for refugees. nearly 21 million people have been affected by the worst flooding to hit pakistan in 80 years. the death toll now stands at 1,738. but it is expected to climb much higher as more people fall
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victim to the water borne diseases they have been affected by. angelina jolie says she decided to go to pakistan after seeing reports from there by our chief medical correspondent, dr. sanjay gupta. she spoke to sanjay in an exclusive interview, and he began by asking her why she thinks people haven't paid enough attention to this disaster. >> i think people have a bit of fatigue in general when it comes to disaster relief. but if i can say that the thing i've learned the most in being here is that we tend to focus on one issue at a time, because that seems to be what people can absorb and care for. but pakistan is so complex, because it has not just the people from the flood, but still the 1.7 million afghan people who are here, and they have been displaced from the flood. >> we tend to think of these places as "over there," somewhere else, not here. but when you go and -- i was there, as well, you meet people. there are real faces and stories
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behind these crazy high numbers. raymond and zinul are two people you met. what did they tell you? >> we go to these places and always say the same thing to the viewer is that they would be so moved if they were here, and it's true, and if they met these children who are so resilient and still children, and still full of life and love and hope, and it's so moving. and this is very unique for me, because i met this beautiful older couple who are in their 70s, and they worked their whole lives. and the man had been in the pakistani military twice, and he had been living on a pension, and with a small pension built this home and family for his grandchildren and it was very modest to begin with. but he had something. and now they are both dealing with a lot of sickness. and as you see, i believe in the tape, the woman was -- is so embarrassed with her situation. she -- and the man spoke of the fact that he never felt in his lifetime he's ever going to be able to recuperate what he's
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lost. that he would never, ever have again nice things. that he would never have a nice bed, a nice house, and she -- they have lived in this place since 1972. and raised their children and their grandchildren there. and in a moment, in a few hours, it was completely gone. and they're really good people. and really, really just kind, wonderful hard-working older people who -- who will pass away, most likely in this mud-covered area, which is so covered with dirt, and there's feces in the river nearby, and so covered in flies, and doesn't have the dignity they deserve to live in, anyone deserves to live in. >> it's so heart breaking to hear that and more heart breaking to hear they're embarrassed to tell but it. i don't know how that should make somebody feel. i traveled through these camps, angelina, where i saw these kids in their tents and the situations you're describing, doing their homework, and being a father, as well, i don't know,
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it just really got at me, because they have dreams and aspirations and hopes, and those things are spread throughout the world evenly. what -- are you optimistic about the next generation of pakistan? it is a young country, it has been devastated so many times n now, as you just mentioned. >> i think -- i think we have no choice but to be optimistic, and to have hope. i think without that, we're just lost, and things deteriorate. i think -- you know, this part of the world, they are resilient people. think of all that they have been hit with. and they continue to move on, to rebuild, to train, to educate, to learn -- you know, they're really trying, and they have fought through a lot, and they'll continue to fight through. and that goes for the afghani people, as well. so we have to. we have to support them. >> the flooding in pakistan started back in july of the u.n. issued an appeal for $260 million in emergency funds on august the 11th. so far, only $294 million has been received. donations have basically dried
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up in recent days. john mccain's daughter driven to tears. your cnn equals politics update is next live from the cnn election express. my name is vonetta, and i suffer from allergies. [ male announcer ] we asked zyrtec® users what they love about their allergy relief, and what it lets them do. the thing i love most about zyrtec® is that it allows me to be outside. [ male announcer ] we bet you'll love zyrtec®, too -- or it's free. [ vonetta ] it is countdown to marshmallow time. [ woman laughs ] ♪ [ female announcer ] good friends never run out of things to talk about... and during endless shrimp at red lobster, you can keep the conversation going over endless servings of your favorite shrimp. from classics like garlic shrimp scampi and decadent shrimp pasta... to new creations, like crunchy parmesan shrimp. our best value of the year, endless reasons to get together. during endless shrimp,
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right now at red lobster.
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time for cnn equals politics. right now, cnn national political correspondent jessica yellin on election express in covington, kentucky. right across the bridge from cincinnati, ohio. so she is going to tell us what is crossing the ticker right now. $5 extra if you work skyline
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chili into your report. >> reporter: oh, ali, okay. all right. first of all, it's a big day today for former president bill clinton. he is out stumping. first i told you yesterday he was stumping for florida's senate democratic candidate kendrick meek, he raised $175,000 in an afternoon for the candidate who will need a lot more than that. and today he is headed down south to arkansas, where he will join senate democratic candidate blanch lincoln. he has stumped for lincoln before, ali. you might remember. that was a chosely-watched senate runoff between two democratic contenders, and bill clinton helped clinch a win for her in the primary, but even the clinton magic might not be enough to pull blanch lincoln through. privately, democrats are conceding that her senate seat is one they realize they may likely lose come november. well, it's hard to talk about one clinton as another as it is to mention, what was it, chili on the skyline without french
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fries? also, yeah, so big day today also for secretary of state hillary clinton. she gave an important speech to the council on foreign relations where she talked about her view of the u.s.'s role and the world in the future. she said the u.s. will retain its role as a dominant leader in the world, but more through partnerships, strategic partnerships, and not just through overwhelming military and economic might. she also used the opportunity to criticize plans by a florida church to burn a koran on the anniversary of 9/11. she says she wishes that weren't getting as much attention as it is, but, quote are that's the world we're living in today. and i don't know, ali, i don't know what makes you cry, but if you're megan mccain, she is telling jay leno what her cry is her dad's choice of sarah palin to be his running mate on the ticket. she is shocked. she didn't really know who she was when the announcement came. and she says politics, you don't like surprises in politics. all this, you won't be surprised to hear, is as she is promoting,
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what, a book, "dirty sexy politics," i'm sure you can buy it in stores everywhere, i'm sure megan mccain would like everyone to do that. ali. >> you and i work together a lot, but we haven't shared a lot of food. so you're probably not a cincinnati chili you're probably not much of a chili aficionado. they put cocoa on spaghetti. >> reporter: cocoa on spaghetti? too starch heavy. >> jessica, thank you so much for that. jessica yellin with our political ticker. we'll be bringing that up to you very regularly. be sure to stay with cnn for complete coverage of the key races and the key issues heading into this critical midterm election, your next "cnn equals politics" update is just one hour away. energy bills for your home cut in half. how do you do that?
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i'll tell you about geothermal energy. and i'll show you a company taking geothermal energy to a whole new level. today just seemed like a great day to save. oh, it's not just today. with our free loyalty program, you earn great stuff like accident forgiveness and bigger discounts just by staying with us. oh! ooh! so, what you're saying is, it gets even better with age. oh! tell me we're still talking about insurance. rewarding loyalty. now, that's progressive. call or click today.
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time for the big "i" that could change the way we do things. i feel bad that i don't talk about this more because it is truly one of the most fascinating forms of energy and could actually answer a lot of our problems. i'm talking about geothermal energy, the heat that we can extract from the ground, largely for free. you can't get it for free. you have to set up a few things to make sure you can extract it.
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i want to give you a big picture. let me take you back to 1973 and give you a sense of what our energy consumption looked like back in 1973. basically a pie of where we got our energy from. back then, more than half of our energy came from oil. almost a quarter came from coal. about 19% from gas and then if you look over there, nuclear, hyd hydro, electric from water and other were altogether less than 5% of our energy. let's take it to 2009, the latest year for which we have complete statistics. we've gone from 52.5% dependence on oil to 37.2%. natural gas has increased to 24.2%. coal done from 22.6% to 19%. nuclear was 1.3%.
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now it's 11% of what we do. hydro, exactly the same as where it was back in 1973. but we're getting 4.4% of our energy from combustible renewals and waste, which is fantastic. that other category has gone to 1.1%. within other falls geothermal. bottom line, not too many people are using geothermal. what's the issue with geothermal? you go into the ground and the temperature even ten feet under the ground is much more consistent than it is above ground. so think about it like your fridge. basically you run water through pipes that go into the ground. in winter you're taking your cooler water from your house, running it through the ground. it warms up and then comes back up and warms your house. in summer, the temperature of the water in your house is going to be hotter than it is in the ground. so you run that same water through the earth and it cools it down. it's the same way a refrigerator
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works. you're just using the earth. now, this is being used. a lot of people are using it. some people are using it in their homes. some companies are using it. one company that i often think of at the cutting edge of new ways of consuming energy is ikea. it's an interesting company. joseph roth is with ikea because they are taking a 415 square foot building in denver, and it is the first geothermal ikea in the united states. tell me about it. >> we're very excited about the product we're building in centennial, colorado. the first ikea store in the u.s. that will be built as a
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geothermal component. >> how do you get the geothermal? putting holes into the ground? >> 135 holes have been dug into the ground, 5 1/2 inches wide. pipes will be put in them. it serves as a closed loop. then there's a liquid that will circulate throughout these tubes absorbing heat or coolness from the ground and taking it up into the store and adding it into our heating and cooling system. >> i described it as water. but it's a fluid that will conduct that heat. i'm oversimplifying it but it kind of does work like a fridge. can it work the same way in houses? you've done an ikea like this before. it's not the first one in the world. >> absolutely, worldwide, we have about 15 other locations, mostly in europe that do have geothermal and we're very excited. obviously there are certain sight-specific attributes which
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makes this ideal. if you have a very high water table, it's not as doable to drill down deep into the ground. but in colorado, great soil, great ground, great opportunity. and 415,000 square feet is a great space. >> do you really make up the money that you save by using geothermal? >> absolutely. we would not be making this sizable of an investment if we weren't confident of the result. we're expecting very quick payback and expecting between 40% and 50% reduction in our energy cost and our consumption. >> your payback will be over how many years? >> very shortly after opening. >> very good. joseph, thanks for joining with us. great ideas. we love the fact that ikea continues to come up with great ways to keep the earth a little bit greener.
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let's talk a little bit about geothermal energy in your house. it's going to cost you two to three times as much as replacing your current heating and cooling system but you are going to make that money back two ways. first of all, the federal government offers a 30% uncapped federal tax credit for installing a geothermal system. there is no cap on that. that is something worth remembering. secondly, you're going to cut your heating and cooling bill in half. so your initial investment could be paid back within four to five years. again, as joseph just said, it's got to do with where you live. doesn't work for everybody and you have to have somebody around who knows how to do it. we're going to take a quick break.
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let me bring you to this picture that we're looking at of the president of the united states. barack obama at a community college in cleveland, ohio. i'm sorry. he's in cleveland. he will be speaking momentarily. he will talk about this $200 billion that we've been discussing and his view on tax cuts for the wealthiest in society. we'll bring you those comments when he starts making them. i also want to tell you about im im imam feiasl abdul rauf. so much has developed on this story in the last few weeks. so much real information, so much misinformation. that's the site upon which that mosque is going to be built. it's a commercial site two blocks from ground zero. ground zero is the big open square that you can see here on the map. you can see the proposed mosque
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site a couple of blocks away from it. you can't see it from ground zero. you can't see ground zero from that site. and the existing mosque that this will be replacing has existed for sometime, just two blocks north of that. there is a man at the center of all of that. imam feisal abdul rauf. he has been overseas throughout the entire time that we've been talking about this. he's been on a mission, in part, helping the state department out. but he published -- "the new york times" published an opinion column from him today in which he says cordoba house will be built on the two fundamentals. to love the lord our creator with all of our hearts, minds, souls and strength and to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. we want to foster a culture of worship authentic to each religious tradition and a culture of forging personal bonds across religious traditions. you heard this referred to in a number of ways.
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cordoba house refers as the imam clarifies in his column, our name koroba was inspired by the city in spain where christians, jews and muslims lived together. he will be on cnn in his first interview on television tonight on "larry king live." he will do that at 9:00 p.m. eastern time. soledad o'brien will conduct that interview. we wanted to find out a little bit more about this man. there have been things said about him that are not true. there have been things said about him that are true. deborah feyerick has this profile. >> reporter: you have never heard him speak. this is what imam feisal abbull rauf has to say. >> the major theme of islam is the oneness of god and that we should worship one god, love and adore the one god. >> reporter: people who know him
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say he's a voice of moderation. the state department -- >> his work on tolerance and diversity is well known. >> reporter: the developer of the controversial islamic center near ground zero -- >> he is somebody who has sacrificed his life to building bridges within communities. >> reporter: islamic scholar and university professor john epsizito. >> feisal, from my point of view s mr. mellow. >> reporter: imam feisal is a sufi muslim. >> he approaches islam spiritually. he is a suff in background. he's somebody who would find terrorism and religious extremism as abhorrent. he's run a mosque in this area for years and years and years. >> reporter: that mosque is ten
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blocks from ground zero and has coexisted peacefully in the in tribeca neighborhood for 23 years. in 1997, he founded the nonprofit american society for muslim advancement. its mission described on its website as strengthening an authentic expression of islam based on cultural and religious harmony through interfaith collaboration, yut and women's empowerment. several years later, rauf founded the cordoba institute to improve relations between the muslim world and the west, writing how american muslims can help bring the divide. the state department noticed, sending him as a cultural ambassador on four trips to the middle east. most recently this summer. >> they try to get people who reflect the best aspects of
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american society. >> reporter: rauf is often asked to speak at meetings like the world economic forum in davos. he was criticized after 9/11 for saying u.s. support of oppressive regime was responsible for the attacks. the comments were taken out of context. rauf supports israel's right to exist. as for the proposed islamic center and mosque near ground zero, he says that, too, is about bridges. >> this is also our expression of the 99.99% of muslims all over the world, including in america who have condemn and continue to condemn terrorism. this is about our stand as the muslim community. >> deborah, you've been following this since the beginning. what do we think happens next?
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when we read the op ed in "the new york times" today, my first thought was, is he going to say something in here that suggests backing down from the position of putting that mosque there? absolutely not. he put forward a strong argument, an impassioned argument but there was no talk of bending to compromise or listening to those who say, why don't we cool this down by pulling it back. >> reporter: exactly. how far is far enough? if they decide to pull away, where do you put this particular mosque and what kind of message does that send? i've been speaking to a lot of people today about where things are now, especially the fact that imam feisal is back in the country. i'm hearing that he never consulted with national muslim organizations or even regional muslim organizations who perhaps could have helped, who could perhaps have given not only the imam but the developer kind of the pulse of what's going on across the nation so even though
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this islamic center had great support down in the tribeca area near ground zero, what it didn't have was that larger overall nationwide sort of sense of how this was going to be perceived. that is what they're fighting against now. i'm told they're spending a lot of time on conference calls really thooigt trying to make this right and try to get this back on track or at least away from this firestorm. >> it will be interesting to look back at this and see what developed out of it. some say it's brugt brought out remarkable animosity and hatred. and others are saying people have had to put down a stake. you will be part of our watching it all. thanks for your great reporting on this. let's go to the president in cleveland, ohio. >> and three of the hardest
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working and finest member of the house of representatives, dennis kucinich, marsha burge and john bochari. good afternoon, everybody. it is good to be back in ohio. you know, in the fall of 2008, one of the last rallies of my presidential campaign was right here in the cleveland area. it was a hopeful time. just two days before the election. and we knew that if we pulled it off, we'd finally have the chance to tackle some big and difficult challenges that had
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been facing this country for a very long time. we also hoped for a chance to get beyond some of the old political divides between democrats and republicans, red states and blue states, that had prevented us from making progress. because although we are proud to be democrats, we are prouder to be americans. and we believe -- we believe then and we believe now that no single party has a monopoly on wisdom. that's not to say that the election didn't expose deep differences between the parties. i ran for president because for much of the last decade, a very specific governing philosophy
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had reigned about how america should work. cut taxes, especially for millionaires and billionaires. cut regulations for special interests. cut trade deals, even if they didn't benefit our workers. cut back on investments in our people and in our future, in education and clean energy and research and technology. the idea was that if we just had blind faith in the market, if we let corporations play by their own rules, if we left everyone else to fend for themselves, then america would grow and america would prosper. and for a time, this idea gave us the illusion of prosperity. we saw financial firms and ceos take in record profits and
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record bonuses. we saw housing boom that led to new homeowners and new jobs in construction. consumers bought more condos and bigger cars and better tvs. but while all this was happening, the broader economy was becoming weaker. nobody understands that more than the people of ohio. job growth between 2000 and 2008 was slower than it had been in any economic expansion since world war ii, slower than it's been over the last year. the wages and income of middle class families kept falling while the cost of everything from tuition to health care kept on going up.
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folks were forced to put more debt on their credit cards and borrow against homes that many couldn't afford to buy in the first place. and meanwhile, a failure to pay for two wars and two tax cuts for the wealthy helped turn a record surplus into a record deficit. i ran for president because i believed that this kind of economy was unsustainable. for the middle class and for the future of our nation. i ran because i had a different idea about how america was built. it was an idea -- it was an idea rooted in my own family story.
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you see, michelle and i are where we are today because even though our families didn't have much i they worked tirelessly without complaint so that we might have a better life. my grandfather marched off to europe in world war ii while my grandmother worked in factories on the home front. i had a single mom who put herself through school and would wake before dawn to make sure i got a decent education. michelle can still remember her father heading out to his job as a city worker long after multiple sclerosis made it impossible for him to walk without crutches. he always got to work. he just had to get up a little earlier. yes, our families believed in the american values of self-reliance and individual
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responsibility. and they instilled those values in their children. but they also believed in a country that rewards responsibility, a country that rewards hard work, a country built on the promise of opportunity and upward mobility. they believed in an america that gave my grandfather the chance to go to college because of the g.i. bill. an american that gave my grandparents the chance to buy a home because of the federal housing authority. an america that gave their children and grandchildren the chance to fulfill our dreams thanks to college loans. and college scholarships. it was an america where you didn't buy things you couldn't afford, where we didn't just think about today. we thought about tomorrow. an america that took pride in
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the goods that we made, not just the things we consumed. ang america where a rising tide really did lift all boats from the boat ceo to the guy on the assembly line. that's the america i believe in. that's the america i believe in. that's what led me to work in the shadow of the shuttered steel plant on the south side of chicago when i was a community organizer. that's what led me to fight for factory workers and manufacturing plants that were closing across illinois when i was senator. it's what led me to run for president. because i don't believe we can have a strong and growing economy without a strong and growing middle class.
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now, things happened since that election. the flawed policies and economic weaknesses of the previous decade culminated in a financial crisis and the worst recession of our lifetimes. and my hope was that the crisis would cause everybody, democrats and republicans, to pull together and tackle our problems in a practical way. but as we all know, things didn't work out that way. some republican leaders figured it was smart politics to sit on the sidelines and let democrats solve the mess. others believed on principle that government should meddle in
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the markets, even when the markets are broken. but with the nation losing nearly 800,000 jobs the month that i was sworn into office, my most urgent task was to stop a financial meltdown and prevent this recession from becoming a second depression. so, ohio, we have done that. the economy is growing again. financial markets are stabilizing. the private sector has created jobs over the last eight months in a row. and there are roughly 3 million americans who are working today because of the economic plan we put into place.
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the truth is progress has been painfully slow. millions of jobs were lost before our policies even had a chance to take effect. we lost 4 million jobs in the six months before i took office. it was a hole so deep that even though we've added jobs again, millions of americans remain unemploy unemployed. hundreds of thousands of families have lost their homes. millions more can barely pay the bills or make the mortgage. the middle class is still treading water. and those ae spiring to reach the middle class are doing everything they can to keep from drowning. and meanwhile, some of the very steps that were necessary to save the economy like temporarily supporting the banks and the auto industry fed the
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perception that washington is still ignoring the middle class in favor of special interests. so people are frustrated and they're angry and they're anxious about the future. i understand that. i also understand that in a political campaign, the easiest thing for the other side to do is to ride this fear and anger all the way to election day. that's what's happening right now. a few weeks ago, the republican leader of the house came here to cleveland and offered his party's answer to our economic challenges. now, it would be one thing if he had admitted his party's mistakes during the eight years that they were in power, if they had gone off for a while and meditated and come back and offered a credible new approach
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to solving our country's problems. but that's not what happened. there were no new policies from mr. boehner. there were no new ideas. there was just the same philosophy that we had already tried during the decade that they were in power. the same philosophy that led to this mess in the first place. cut more taxeses a better country for our children and grandchildren, their argument is that we should let insurance companies go back to denying care for folks who are sick or let credit card companies go back to raising rates without any reason. instead of setting our sights higher, they're asking us to
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settle for a status quo of stagnant growth and eroding competitiveness and a shrinking middle class. cleveland, that is not the america i know. that is not the america we believe in. a lot has changed since i came here in those final days of the last election. but what hasn't changed is the choice facing this country. it's still fear versus hope. the past versus the future. it's still a choice between sliding backward and moving forward. that's what this election is about. that's the choice that you will face in november.
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now, we have a different vision for the future. see, i've never believed that government has all the answers to our problems. i've never believed the government's role is to create jobs or prosperity. i believe it's the drive and the enjunety of our entrepreneur, our small businesses, the skill and dedication of our workers that's made us the wealthiest nation on earth. i believe it's the private sector that must be the main engine for our recover. i believe government should be lean, government should be efficient. i believe government should leave people free to make the choices they think are best for themselves and their families,
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so long as those choices don't hurt others. but in the words of the first republican president, abraham lincoln, i also believe that government should do for the people what they cannot do better for themselves. and that means making the long-term investments in this country's future that individuals and corporations can't make on their own, investments in education and clean energy, in basic research and technology and infrastructure. that means making sure corporations live up to their responsibilities to treat consumers fairly and play by the same rules as everybody else.
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their responsibilities to look out for their workers as well as their shouldareholders here at . and that means providing a handout to middle class families so if they work hard and meet their responsibilities, they can afford to raise their children and send them to college, see a doctor when they get sick, retire with dignity and respect. that's what we democrats believe in. a vibrant free market but one that works for everybody. that's our vision. that's our vision for a stronger economy and a growing middle class. and that's the difference
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between what we and republicans in congress are offering the american people right now. let me give you a few specific examples of our different approaches. this week, i proposed some additional steps to grow the economy and help businesses spur hiring. one of the keys to job creation is to encourage companies to invest more in the united states. but for years, our tax code has actually given billions of dollars in tax breaks that encouraged companies to create jobs and profits in other countries. i want to change that. i want to change that. instead of tax loopholes that incentivize investment in
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overseas jobs, i'm proposing a more generous permanent extension of the tax credit that goes to companies for all the research and innovation they do right here in ohio, right here in the united states of america. and i'm proposing that all american businesses should be allowed to write off all the investment they do in 2011. and this will help small businesses upgrade their plants and equipment and will encourage large corporations to get off the sidelines and start putting their profits to work in places like cleveland and toledo and dayton. now, to most of you, i'll bet this just seems like common sense. but not to mr. boehner and his allies. for years, republicans have
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fought to keep these corporate loopholes open. in fact, when mr. boehner was here in cleveland, he attacked us for closing a few of those loopholes and using the money to help states like ohio keep hundreds of thousands of teachers and cops and firefighters on the job. mr. boehner dismissed these jobs we saved, teaching our kids, patrolling our streets, rushing in to burning buildings, as, quote, government jobs, jobs, i guess, he thought just weren't worth saving. and i couldn't disagree more. i think teachers and police officers and firefighters are part of what keeps america strong.
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and, ohio, i think if we're going to give tax breaks to compani companies, they should go to companies that create jobs here in america, not that create jobs overseas. that's one difference between the republican vision and the democratic vision. that's what this election is all about. let me give you another example. we want to put more americans back to work rebuilding america, our roads, our railways, our runways. when the housing sector collapsed and the recession hit, 1 in every 4 jobs lost were in the construction industry. that's partly why our economic plan has invested in badly
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needed infrastructure projects over the last 19 months. not just roads and bridges but high-speed railroads and expanded broadband access. all together these projects have led to thousands of good private sector jobs, especially for those in the trades. mr. boehner and the republicans in congress said "no" to these projects, fought them tooth and nail. i should say it didn't stop a lot of them from showing up at the ribbon cuttings trying to take credit. that's always a sight to see. now, there are still thousands of miles of railroads and railways and runways left to repair and improve. and engineers, economists, governors, mayors of every political stripe believe that if we want to compete in this global economy, we need to
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rebuild this vital infrastructure. there is no reason europe or china should have the fastest trains or the most modern airports. we want to put america to work building them right here in america. so this week, i've proposed a six-year infrastructure plan that would start putting americans to work right away. but despite the fact that this has traditionally been an issue with bipartisan support, mr. boehner has so far said "no" to infrastructure. that's bad for america. and that, too, is what this election is all about. i'll give you one final example of the differences between us and the republicans.
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and that's on the issue of tax cuts. under the tax plan passed by the last administration, taxes are scheduled to go up substantially next year. for everybody. by the way, this was by design. when they passed these tax cuts in 2001 and 2003, they didn't want everybody to know what it would do to our deficit. so they pretend like they were going to end, even though now they say they don't. now, i believe we ought to make the tax cuts for the middle class permanent. for the middle class permanent. these families are the ones who saw their wages and incomes flatline over the last decade. you deserve a break.
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you deserve some help. and because folks in the middle class are more likely to spend their tax cut on basic necessities, that strengthens the economy as a whole. but the republican leader of the house doesn't want to stop there. make no mistake, he and his party believe we should also give a permanent tax cut to the wealthiest 2% of americans. with all the other budgetary pressures we have, with all the republicans talk about wanting to shrink the deficit, they would have us borrow $700 billion over the next ten years to give a tax cut of about
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$100,000 each to folks who are already millionaires. and keep in mind, wealthy americans are just about the only folks who saw their incomes rise when republicans were in charge. and these are the folks who are less likely to spend the money which is why economists don't think tax breaks for the wealthy would do much to boost the economy. so let me be clear to mr. boehner and everybody else -- we should not hold mizz l class tax cuts hostage any longer. we are ready this week if they want to give tax cuts to every american making $250,000 or
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less. that's 98%, 97% of americans. now, for any income over this amount, the tax rates would just go back to what they were under president clinton. this isn't to punish folks who are better off, god bless em. it's because we can't afford the $700 billion price tag. and for those who claim that our approach would somehow be bad for growth and bad for small businesses, let me remind you that with those tax rates in place under president clinton, this country created 22 million jobs and raised incomes and had
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the largest surplus in our history. in fact, if the republican leadership in congress really wants to help small businesses, they'll stop using legislative maneuvers to block an up-or-down vote on a small business jobs bill that's before the senate right now, right now. this is a bill that would do two things. it would cut taxes for small businesses and make loans more available for small businesses. it is fully paid for, won't add to the deficit, and it was written by democrats and republicans. and yet the other party continues to block this jobs bill.
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a delay that small business owners have said is actually leading them to put off hiring. look, i recognize that most of the republicans in congress have said "no" to just about every policy i've proposed since taking office. i realize in some cases that there are genuine philosophical differences. but on issues like this one, a tax cut for small businesses supported by the chamber of commerce, the only reason they're holding this up is politics, pure and simple. they're making the same calculation they made just before my inauguration.
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if i fail, they win. well, they might think that this will get them to where they want to go in november, but it won't get our country going where it needs to go in the long run. it won't get us there. it won't get us there. it won't get us there. so that's the choice, ohio. do we return to the same failed
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policies that ran our economy into a ditch, or do we keep moving forward with policies that are slowly pulling us out? do we settle for a slow decline, or do we reach for an america with a growing economy and a thriving middle class? that's the america that i see. we may not be there yet. but we know where this country needs to go. we see a future where we invest in american innovation and american ingenuity, where we export more goods so we create more jobs here at home, where we make it easier to start a business or patent an invention, where we build a homegrown clean energy industry because i don't want to see new solar panels or electric cars or advanced
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battery manufactured in europe or in asia. i want to see them made right here in the u.s. of a. by american workers. we see an america where every citizen has the skills and training to compete with any worker in the world. that's why we've set a goal, to once again have the highest proportion of college graduates in the world by 2020. that's why we're revitalizing community colleges like this one. that's why we're reforming our
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education system based on what works for our children, not what perpetuates the status quo. we see an america where a growing middle class is the beating heart of a growing economy, and that's why i kept my campaign promise and gave a middle class tax cut to 95% of working americans. that's why we passed health insurance reform that stops insurance companies from jacking up your premiums at will or denying coverage because you get sick. that's why we passed financial reform that will end taxpayer-funded bailouts, reform that will stop credit card companies and mortgage lenders from taking advantage of taxpayers and consumers. that's why we're trying to make it easier for workers to save
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for retirement and fighting the efforts of some in the other party to privatize social security because as long as i'm president, no one is going to take the retirement savings of a generation of americans and hand it over to wall street, not on my watch. that's why we're fighting to extend the child tax credit and make permanent our new college tax credit because if we do, it will men $10,000 in tuition relief for each child going to four years of college. and i don't want any parent not to be sending their kids in good time or bad to college because they can't afford it. and finally, we see an america
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where we refuse to pass on the debt we inherited to the next generation. now, let me spend just a minute on this issue because we've heard a lot of moralizing on the other side about this. government spending and debt. along with the tax cuts for the wealthy, the other party's main economic proposal is that they'll stop government spending. now, it's right to be concerned about the long-term deficit. if we don't get a handle on it soon, it can endanger our future. and at a time when folks are tightening their belts at home, i understand why a lot of americans feel it's time for government to show some discipline, too. but let's look at the facts. when these same republicans, including mr. boehner, were in
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charge, the number of earmarks and pet projects went up not down. these same republicans turned a record surplus into a record deficit. when i walked in wrapped in a nice bow was a $1.3 trillion deficit sitting right there on my doorstep, a welcoming present. just this year, these same republicans voted against a bipartisan fiscal commission that they themselves have proposed. once i decided i was for it, they were against it. and when you ask them what
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programs they'd actually cut, they don't have an answer. that's not fiscal responsibility. that's not a serious plan to govern. i'll be honest, i refuse to cut back on those investments that will grow our economy in the future. investments in areas like education and clean energy and technology. i don't want to cut those things. and that's because economic growth is the single best way to bring down the deficit and we need these investments to grow. but i am absolutely committed to fiscal responsibility, which is why i've already proposed freezing all discretionary spending unrelated to national security for the next three years. and once the bipartisan fiscal
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commission finishing its work, i'll spend the next year making the tough choices necessary to further reduce our deficit and lower our debt. whether i get help from the other side or not. of course, reducing the deficit won't be easy. making up for the 8 million lost jobs caused by this recession won't happen overnight. not everything we've done over the last two years has worked as quickly as we had hoped. and i am keenly aware that not all of our policies have been popular. so, no, our job is not easy. but you didn't elect me to do what was easy.
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you didn't elect me to just read the polls and figure how to keep myself in office. you didn't elect me to avoid big problems. you elected me to do what was right and as long as i'm president, that's exactly what i intend to do. this country is emerging from an incredibly difficult period in its history, an era of
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irresponsibility that stretched from wall street to washington and had a devastating effect on a lot of people. we have started turning the corner on that era. but part of moving forward is returning to the time-honored values that built this country -- hard work and self-reliance. responsibility for ourselves, but also responsibility for one another. it's about moving from an attitude that said "what's in it for me" to one that asks "what's best for america, what's best for all f o our workers, what's best for all of our businesses, what's best for all of our children?" these values are not democratic or republican.
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they are not conservative or liberal values. they are american values. as democrat, we take pride in what our party has accomplished over the last century. social security and the minimum wage, the g.i. bill and medicare, civil rights and women's rights. but we also recognize that throughout our history there has been a noble republican vision as well of what this country can be. it was the vision of abraham lincoln who set up the first land grant colleges and launched the transcontinental railroad, the vision of teddy roosevelt who used the power of government to break up monopolies, the vision of dwight eisenhower who helped build the interstate highway system. and, yes, the vision of ronald reagan who despite his aversion
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to government was willing to help save social security for future generations, working with democrats. these were serious leaders for serious times. they were great politicians but they didn't spend all their time playing games or scoring points. they didn't always prey on people's fears and anxieties. they made mistakes but they did what they thought was in the best interests of their country and its people. and that's what the american people expect of us today. democrats, independents and republicans. that's the debate they deserve. that's the leadership we owe them.
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i know that folks are worried about the future. i know there's still a lot of hurt out there. and when times are tough, i know it can be tempting to give in to cynicism and fear and doubt and division, to just settle our sights a little bit lower, settle for something a little bit less. but that's not who we are, ohio. those are not the values that built this country. we are here today because in the worst of times, the people who came before us brought out the best in america because our parents and our grandparents and our great grandparents were willing to work and sacrifice for us. they were willing to take great risks and face great hardship and reach for a future that would give us the chance at a better life.
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they knew that this country is greater than the sum of its parts, that america is not about the ambitions of any one individual, but the aspirations of an entire people, an entire nation. that's who we are. that is our legacy. and i'm convinced that if we're willing to summon those values today and if we're willing to choose hope over fear and choose the future over the past and come together once more around the great project of national renewal, then we will restore our economy and rebuild our middle class and reclaim the american dream for the next generation. thank you, god bless you. and may god bless the united states of america. >> president obama is speaking in parma, ohio, a suburb of cleveland, ohio.
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he's talking about taxes a lot, talking about john boehner quite a bit. this is the second time this week that he has taken john boehner's name so many times, attacking the republican plan with respect to tax. we're going to talk a little bit more about this on the other side. i want to give my 5 employees health insurance,
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but i just can't afford it. i have diabetes. i didn't miss a premium payment for 10 years. and i'm worried if i lose my job, i won't be able to afford insurance. when i graduated from college, i lost my health insurance. the minute i got sick, i lost my insurance. not anymore. not anymore. not anymore. america's healthcare reforms change lives for the better. to find out how it can help you, visit us at americasfairhealthcare.org it's not just fair, it's the law.
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time now for a political ticker update. candy crowley is at the
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cnnpolitics.com desk in washington. candy will talk about the speech the president just brought in a few minutes. what's going on right now? >> reporter: haley barber, probably one of the sharpest political minds around, the governor of mississippi, also head of the republican governors' association, he has been talking to reporters and saying, listen, what republicans need to do between now and voting day in november is keep their foot on the accelerator. he has always been the most cautious of republicans when it comes to things like predicting ahead. he says there's a lot of time between now and then. he's warning that republicans really have to keep their foot on the accelerator and their focus on what matters and what matters "s" economy. rahm emanuel, as you know, we've heard that chicago mayor daley is going to step down from his job. there will be an election next february in 2011. will rahm emanuel, a native of
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chicago, now the chief of staff, go back and run for mayor? certainly there's a lot of speculation about that and about who would replace him at the white house, almost as important as who's going to run for chicago mayor because that chief of staff position that rahm emanuel has is key to what's going to be the second half of president obama's administration. so everybody's looking not just at chicago, but inside the white house to see who might replace rahm emanuel. and finally, we heard president obama talk a lot about john boehner, the republican leader, in that speech just now. why do they do that? because it really does give a face to the opposition. and who have republicans been talking about all these many months to give a face to the democratic opposition? not just president obama but nancy pelosi. there's certain signs in our new poll that perhaps some of this is working. if you look at nancy pelosi, now speaker of the house a democrat from california, look at her unfavorable ratings now, over 50%.
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51% of americans have an unfavorable rating of pelosi, up 30% from 2007. so it probably does work when you are a target, does drive up the unfavorables. i should add that in the san francisco area where nancy pelosi hails from, she's quite popular. wouldn't worry too much about her seat at the house of representatives. it's the speaker seat that everybody has their eyes on, ali. >> candy, thanks so much for that and for keeping an eye an owl of this for us. candy crowley in washington. be sure to stay with cnn for complete coverage of the key races and issues heading into the critical midterm elections. your next "cnn equals politics" update is just an hour away. we want to announce that piers morgan will be taking over larry king's primetime hour in january. piers has an extensive newspaper background. he's coming to us with a candid, in-depth interview show. we are pleased to welcome him to
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the cnn family. we're going to send you over to rick sanchez right after this break.